Continued chronicles of a purging book monger in the soiled humun nexus along 110 + 111


7/6/23: In upd8 to our previous POD post, Sleepingfish 8 is now available on dem&. We had 2 erase the area above the S + F on the cover, but otherwise didn't halve 2 do much 2 pass mustard w/ Amazon. Weave bin trying 2 do Robert Lopez's Part of the World as POD 4 a while now, maybe ½ a dozen back + 4ths, the Bozos keep saying the title font is illegible/obstructed + there ain't much else we can do B-sides redo the cover altogether, so we might use PotW az a guinea pig 2 try the Ingram route (which we did + are now just waiting 72 hours for approval). Ingram Spark (there's also another Ingram POD outfit, "Lightning Source"... not sure what the difference is, it's all very confusing) was also fairly EZ, but it seams 2 B taking a bit longer 4 approvals + it's more expen$ive: To do the 182-page Part of the World wood of bin $3.18 per copy on Amazon (on 55 lb paper) + $3.83 thru Ingram (on 50 lb paper... $5.30 if you want 70 lb paper). If/when the Lopez book gets in2 the Ingram system wheel continue 2 compare + contrast... it will also B intresting 2 C if bookstores, lieburys, etc. order it thru Ingram, since that's what most institutions use 4 ordering libros. In fact, mayB we'll put Michael Salu's Red Earth up on Ingram, Y not? Oh, in the last post we may of said that Ingram has a $50 set-up fee, they recently dropped that, so it's also free 2 set up (at least we haven't paid 4 anything yet).

B-sides POD, we've also bin using our Amazon "Seller" account 2 sell books, not just Ↄalamari Arↄhive 1s but others. Again, Amazon has, or have had, a few diffrent programs, which is all confusing. After the $PD debacle (SPD used 2 supply Amazon 4 us), we re-applied 4 the Amazon "Advantage" program, what we used 2 use 2 directly supply the Bozos w/ Ↄalamari b4 we moved overseas + decided to let SPD do it 4 us, but we got put on a w8ing list while they figure out the future of the Advantage program. So in the meantime we signed up 4 a Bozos Seller acct 2 C how we could use that 2 supply Amazon w/ Ↄalamari. It's diffrent than Advantage in that U can sell any book, used or new. 5ince the Ↄalamari books were already in the system, we can just link up to the listing + say we have copies (new) to $ell, especially az they shd B out of stock since SPD closed the acct w/ Amazon (SPD said after 90 days they'd send us royalties (after books from Amazon had been returned + that was March 1... 5 months ago + we've received nothing). And speaking of scams, as an upd8 to The Gr8 [PANK] Swindle post, it's bin almost a month 5ince we ordered Chest is the Best Storage Space by Yuxin Zhao from them + nada... + no word about the status of the contract. They continue swindling writers + selling books that don't exist.

Anyway, we set up the Amazon $eller acct a few months ago + we've only sold a handful of Ↄalamari books sin¢e then (certainly not worth the $39.99 monthly fee (tho, it seems Amazon has been waiving this 4 whatever reason, or maybe they deduct it from our earnings + don't let U go in2 the red)). The other day our bedder-½ started going thru the boox in the bathtub in our Mar-a-Lago bathroom... they saw their office @ Columbia + realized they have hardly any shelf-space. So we ordered 4 more bookshelves (in addition to the 2 we're w8ing 4 Gothic cabinet-craft 2 make... they take 4ever, perhaps yet another scam) + our bedder-½ went thru the boox dividing them in2 keepers + 1s they was gonna throw out. In D.C. we had our free little liebury boox we put such books in, but not as many options in NYC... we have a take-1-leave-1 liebury in the basement of our bldg, but it is overflowing w/ trash novels + children's books + although there's only a few free little libraries in NYC, there does happen to be 1 a few blocks away on 107 + Columbus, where we bring a few handfuls every time we go out. A lot of bedder-½'s books are technical/academic books, tho, w/ titles such az The Soil-Human Health Nexus + The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilizations. Out of curiosity, we looked up sum of these books on Amazon + discovered they were selling 4 a a lot of money, 4 eggsample The Soil-Human Health Nexus is selling for $90 (for the paperback, the hardback for $200). So we listed a bunch (all the 1s in the stack below).

We sold a few right off the bat, sum fetching upwards of $50. We also started going thru our own more literary books... sum books we had duplicates of, others their monetary amount was greater than our fondness for keeping 'em in our personal collection. Most books won't fetch U more than $1, when all's said + done (these we're putting downstairs or in the nearby free little liebury)... we set our cut-off @ $5 or $10, depending on size of book. Yesterday we sold our duplicate copy of Confederacy of Dunces 2 sum 1 in the "Metropolitan Detention Center" in Brooklyn for $5 (we recently looked in2 a weigh 2 send boox 2 prisoners 4 free, w/ no such luck... any 1 know of any such programs?). This morning we sold a copy of The Tunnel by William Gaddis for $45 (we weren't crazy about the book... barely cracked the spine, so could list it az "like new"). Our 1st edition of The Battlefield Where the Moon Say I Love You is going for $1875 used on Amazon... think we want to part w/ it? Hell no! Anyways, it's not about the money, but it's nice to know the above books are getting in2 the hands of ppl that want 'em + it helps us clear out our tub so we can actually take a bath. And we're keeping other booksellers honest... ever wonder why the prices are always random #s like 2.14? It's b/c other booksellers are all trying to undersell each other by 1 cent so ppl will buy their copy, in most cases we suspect it's autom8ed... often they'll go down to $0.01 b/c they'll make enough w/ the $3.99 shipping (which Amazon pays to the seller, after they take their cut). We'll go beyond 1 penny lower when picking the lowest price, even a few bucks below, $20 lower, just whatever seams reasonable. And then a minute later every 1 else tries to match our pri¢e. U may also notice how sum books have ridiculously high prices (4 eggsample, weave seen sum Ↄalamari books like J'Lyn Chapman's Bear Stories chapbook 4 sale used for over $1000 b/c it went out of print (it got folded into Beastlife). Seams these booksellers have supply-vs-demand algorithms that determine how much they can get away with.

yesterday's outgoing mail

We know, we know, we shouldn't B using bubble mailers, but those came in handy 4 our recent move (packing dishes, glass frames, etc.), going FWD we're buying recyclable cardboard mailers. Mixed in2 the above were a few Direct Select orders, after we sent out our 1st Ↄalamari email.

Input-wise, here's sum of what we've bin reading this past week or 2 that we recommend:

We had a piece in Oyez 50 (here it is online)... yes, the 50th issue, but they've actually been around for 59 years! Their 1st issue, in 1965, had Charles Bukowski, long b4 Hank Chinaski became a house-hold name. They republished pieces from a few back issues, tho mostly from recent years, the oldest was 1992. It got us to thinking, since we're doing our 20th anniversary Sleepingfish, that we shd do something similar, especially since ½ (6 of 14) of the issues were online? Maybe even reprint sum things from 3rd bed? Speaking of which, we haven't received many submissions yet, for the anniversary issue.

Movie-wise, this is sum of what weave watched the past week or 2:

  • The Bear season 2 (★★★★★)—episode 7 (w/ Jamie Lee Curtis + Saul Goodman) was especially intense... sum of the best stuff on TV in a while
  • The Menu (★★★★)
  • Shame (★★★★★)
  • Terminator 2 (★★★★)—maybe 5th time we've watched it
  • Devil Wears Prada (★★★)
  • The Graduate (★★★★★)—maybe 10th time we've seen it, got 2 thinking Dustin Hoffman is perhaps the best actor ever to live, such a diversity of roles
  • Alien (★★★★★)—maybe 5th time we've watched it, but we need to watch it more, perhaps yearly
  • Muscles + Mayhem series (★★★)—fascinating (at least at 1st) look in2 the '90s American Gladiator phenomena (that we weren't really privy 2 since we didn't have a TV)


newest addition 2 our family

On 7/2 we did a short "remapping" Maphattan walk. 5in¢e our bedder-½ is starting their new gig next week @ Columbia, we figured we'd get up in2 the Morningside area, starting on West 110, the 1st street north of Central Park that goes all the way across w/o central park in the way. Also known as Cathedral Parkway, even tho St John's is on 112.

When you go all the way across the island, U see how much the hoods change, from the collegey Morningside (funny how there's a "Greek" restaurant on the street w/ all the fraternities) + then thru the middle/lower part of Harlem, "little Senegal," where you'll hear a lot of French being spoken + halal butchers, etc. Saw Questlove hanging out w/ his family on the edge of the park (as usual, we walked right by (we're basically face-blind), only after the fact did our bedder-½ tell us we strolled right by him), near the "gate of the exonerated," so named for the Central Park 5 boys falsely accused + convicted of beating + raping a white female jogger. And then getting further east, U get in2 Spanish Harlem, more of a LatinX vibe. Not much has changed since we traversed these streets in 2014, tho perhaps a bit more destitute.


The Young Lords in El Barrio


sure we've taken this photo plenty of times b4 (St. John's cathedral)


.... + sure we've taken the above shot plenty of times b4... Monk's Diner (shd be familiar 2 NE 1 that watched TV in the '90s or that listened 2 the 1st song ever encoded as an MP3), looking down 112 @ St John's... also the block Labyrinth Books is on (even tho they changed the name to Book Culture over a decade ago, we still call it Labyrinth), perhaps the best bookstore in NYC. And around the corner is the infamous Hungarian pastry shop.

Sumwhere along 111th further east we saw sum 1 trying 2 take a selfie in front of a boy's club so we offered 2 help + they gave us the lowdown, how "this is where it all began" for them, extolling the virtues of such institutions that are now falling by the wayside.


hanging out on Amsterdam


We didn't walk that far (~7 miles) b/c it was so hot. We went back down 2 Amsterdam (above), which was closed off 2 cars + they had set up sprinklers (perhaps the city's way 2 keep ppl from opening up fire hydrants on hot days) + 8 @ Calaveras corner... hear's what it sounded like on their patio, w/ music blaring, a band next door + the ice cream truck, all competing for airwaves:

As a reminder to those in the NYC area, upcoming on Sunday, July 9, 5–8 pm, Ↄalamari Arɔhive is having a return-to-NYC party @ Bar Great Harry, 280 Smith St, Brooklyn, also 2 celebr8 the launch of 1/ 4 i am ĐNA + other books + albums released during the pandemic that never had a proper launch party.

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